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Latest Sharon Lawler Stories

2008-10-01 21:00:11

By Lisa M Krieger The scrappy little mosquitofish, the pit bull of ichthyology and the region's leading defense against West Nile virus, is a savior to insect-infested waters. Unless you're a frog. Yes, the fish dines on larval mosquitoes, as intended. But scientists have learned it also has an appetite for the tadpoles of frogs, toads and other amphibians -- including the threatened red- legged frog and the endangered Santa Cruz long-toed salamander. "Frog populations have disappeared...


Word of the Day
cock-a-hoop
  • Exultant; jubilant; triumphant; on the high horse.
  • Tipsy; slightly intoxicated.
This word may come from the phrase 'to set cock on hoop,' or 'to drink festively.' Its origin otherwise is unclear. A theory, according to the Word Detective, is that it's a 'transliteration of the French phrase 'coq a huppe,' meaning a rooster displaying its crest ('huppe') in a pose of proud defiance.' Therefore, 'cock-a-hoop' would 'liken a drunken man to a boastful and aggressive rooster.'
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